Through sprinkles on the windshield, on a gray, cloudy, Tuesday morning, between Emporia and Newton, Kansas

the back half of a long, stretched out train wends its way west, pulling gray, brown, and rusted cars that might hold grain or might be empty

Long sections of rust-colored cars are hooked up to long sections of gray cars, which are hooked up to long sections of mixed cars of gray, rust, or brown

most stenciled with the letters BNSF on the sides; some having painted-out graffiti here and there; others showing off decorative patches of graffiti

The train vanishes into a long line of tall, green trees

A bit farther down the road, two hooked-up train engines pop out of the trees, hauling the thread of gray, rust, and brown cars

and I hear a long, loud blast—a sad, mournful, multi-horned sound, generating a whole range of emotions and longing within me.



Castle on the Horizon


Driving on a turnpike in east Kansas, coming up on a bridge, I stopped staring at the road for a sec, and looked up to the right to view the horizon

but only saw the crenelated walls of a huge, white castle!

Frantically thought I was sleep-driving until realizing that a long motionless train with all white cargo containers had stopped on the tracks heading somewhere on the other side of the bridge.